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Democratic Losses Hit State Farm Teams Hard
Roll Call ^ | 11/9/10 | Steve Peoples

Posted on 11/10/2010 9:42:23 AM PST by randita

Back to Article Democratic Losses Hit State Farm Teams Hard

By Steve Peoples

Roll Call Staff

Nov. 9, 2010, 11:30 p.m.

While the GOP celebrates historic gains in the House, Republicans in state capitals across the country are cheering massive pickups that wiped out key Democratic bench players — a shift that they say may shape elections for years to come.

From Minnesota to Montana, Democrats lost state Speakers, Senate Majority Leaders, lieutenant governors and other up-and-comers whose political futures are now uncertain at best.

Nowhere is the shift more apparent than in New Hampshire, where the GOP won all three federal races and picked up a record 124 seats in the 400-member state House of Representatives.

“We didn’t just beat them. We cleaned out their entire bench. Everyone they talked about running for Congress, governor, down the line. They’re all gone,” said Ryan Williams, spokesman for the New Hampshire Republican Party. “They were building a good farm team. But the farm team is not around anymore.”

The high-profile losses include Maggie Hassan, the state Senate Majority Leader rumored to have greater ambitions. Another is Deb Pignatelli, a member of the governor’s executive council, also thought to have interest in running for Congress.

Granite State Democrats acknowledge the painful losses but insist their bench remains strong.

“We’re feeling very confident moving forward,” New Hampshire Democratic Party spokesman Harrell Kirstein said. “In a state that’s as fiercely independent as New Hampshire, politics are very cyclical. The pendulum swung one way and will swing back the other way.”

He added that President Barack Obama personally phoned unsuccessful 2nd district Congressional candidate Ann McLane Kuster (D) the day after the election to encourage her to challenge Rep.-elect Charlie Bass (R) in 2012. “Annie Kuster is on track to beat Congressman Bass in two years,” Kirstein said.

The Granite State is just one example, however, in a landslide election that saw the GOP pick up at least 675 seats in state legislatures across the nation, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Republicans flipped 19 chambers, including the House and Senate in six states: Alabama, Maine, Minnesota, New Hampshire, North Carolina and Wisconsin.

“They’re going to have to do some serious rebuilding,” said Mark Jefferson, executive director of the Wisconsin Republican Party. “Some of their best talent, or people considered to be their best talent, have really taken it on the chin.”

Wisconsin Democrats lost Assembly Speaker Mike Sheridan, Senate Majority Leader Russ Decker, a rising star in lieutenant governor candidate Tom Nelson and state Sen. Pat Kreitlow, a former television personality thought to have statewide appeal.

Jefferson also said that Democratic Rep. Ron Kind may have narrowly survived his re-election bid in the 3rd district, but negative press that surfaced in the campaign’s final weeks could hurt his prospects for running for statewide office in the future. Kind is viewed as having Senate aspirations whenever Sen. Herb Kohl (D), who is up for re-election in 2012, decides to retire.

“He came out of that race seriously wounded,” Jefferson said of Kind. Like their colleagues in other states, Wisconsin Democrats admit to having a disappointing cycle but downplay the lasting effects of the 2010 drubbing.

“Let them do their victory lap, but it’ll be one lap exactly. ... We have a pretty deep bench here,” said Graeme Zielinski, communications director for the Wisconsin Democratic Party. “They will have to own their record at some point soon. A week in power, they have been talking about gays, guns, banning fake weed. They haven’t been talking about creating jobs. They’ve been talking about their weirdo, right agenda.”

In Minnesota, Republicans claimed 41 seats between both chambers, taking control of the state Senate for the first time in history. State GOP Chairman Tony Sutton says the political landscape may have changed forever.

“You had a thinning of the herd,” he said of Democrats. “And it thinned out those that are more middle-of-the-road Democrats. In some respects it will make it hard for them legislatively; the people that are left are very liberal. And they’re left with an urban-centric delegation in a state that is largely suburban and rural.”

For example, Senate Majority Whip Kathy Saltzman (D) was defeated in her Washington County district, despite having won the endorsement of the state Chamber of Commerce.

While the GOP cheers the loss of up-and-comers like Saltzman, last week’s shift also elevates the Republican farm team’s prospects. Minnesota’s Senate will now feature the first female Republican president and Majority Leader combination, according to Sutton, who added that the likely new Republican House Speaker, Kurt Zellers, “is a real rising star” at just 41 years old.

In New Hampshire, however, there are signs that the defeated Democrats might not be gone for long. In addition to Kuster’s likely candidacy, Pignatelli offered supporters cause for optimism in a message posted on her website.

“It’s clear that what happened here in New Hampshire was stunning, even for politics. There will be lots written about it, that’s for sure,” she wrote. “A favor — as you travel on the roads in District 5, if you see any of my signs along the roadside, will you please stop and pick them up? Would appreciate it. Maybe you’d be willing to save them for a couple of years.


TOPICS: Front Page News; Government; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: Alabama; US: Maine; US: Minnesota; US: New Hampshire; US: North Carolina; US: Wisconsin
KEYWORDS: 2010; 2010election; 2010midterms; democrats; elections; fail; gop; governor; obama; statelegislature
With the energy of the Tea Party movement at the local and state levels, this phenomenon will continue to grow.
1 posted on 11/10/2010 9:42:34 AM PST by randita
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To: Impy; Clintonfatigued; Coop; AuH2ORepublican; InterceptPoint

*


2 posted on 11/10/2010 9:43:47 AM PST by randita
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To: randita

Conservatives everywhere have known for years that the country was headed for an Obama-style dictatorship... we just didn’t know in advance which of the dicks would be the tator.

Now we have Obama and everybody knows.

I guess it took us to get this far for the average voter to realize what conservatives have known for years: the demonrat party is the party of dictatorship.


3 posted on 11/10/2010 9:47:21 AM PST by samtheman
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To: randita
Swinging thoughts back to the Democrats (their miserable plight the topic of this news piece), seems to me that they'll continue to have capable candidates but they'll be coming at us more directly from the special interests that make up the Democrat party.

Instead of the "bought" representative who does the bidding of his masters in Planned Parenthood, we'll have one of the old bulldykes herself out there running as a Democrat ~ in the open.

I'm sure that's in their emergency fallback plan ~ we'll lose an edge in name-calling chits because we'll no longer be able to call them "corrupt", simply "evil" and "barbaric".

4 posted on 11/10/2010 9:47:29 AM PST by muawiyah (GIT OUT THE WAY ~ REPUBLICANS COMIN' THROUGH)
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To: randita

The GOP doesn’t have much time to stop this inflationary debt spiral at the federal level. We can’t have a 10-year strategy to balance the budget, it needs to be balanced this coming year.


5 posted on 11/10/2010 9:49:36 AM PST by GeronL (http://libertyfic.proboards.com <--- My Fiction/ Science Fiction Board)
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To: randita

I agree with you 100%. Im attending a meeting tonite sponsored by the T party groups..in BROWARD county Florida of all places. They are working on a plan to have a mass call/email/fax system during the next couple of yrs. Hits issues on local/state/Fed levels.

America is coming back..it will take a couple of elections but we are on the right track.


6 posted on 11/10/2010 9:52:41 AM PST by rrrod (at home in Medellin Colombia)
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To: randita
“We didn’t just beat them. We cleaned out their entire bench. Everyone they talked about running for Congress, governor, down the line. They’re all gone,” said Ryan Williams, spokesman for the New Hampshire Republican Party.

I think our NH party chairman John Sununu deserves tremendous credit for 2010's success.

7 posted on 11/10/2010 9:52:41 AM PST by billorites (freepo ergo sum)
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To: randita

The real advantage to the conservative movement is now in all those states that have Republican guvs and state houses a small army of ready campaign workers exists for candidates in future elections. The “Progressives” will have to build their own next time. Not that Soros doesn’t have the money but even his pit isn’t bottomless and it takes time.


8 posted on 11/10/2010 9:53:26 AM PST by Don Corleone ("Oil the gun..eat the cannolis. Take it to the Mattress.")
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To: randita

Well, unfortunately two of the things that the Republicans need to do for the good of the country is:

1. End the ethanol scam. To avoid hardships to farmers who have been sucked into this, this should be done over a period of maybe three or four years, cutting back the amount of ethanol in gasoline year by year.

2. Cut the farm subsidies. Not sure if they can be ended entirely, but we have to stop biasing them toward the big factory farm/political contributors, and we have to cut them way back.

The problem with this is that the last time the Republicans tried this, quite a few years ago, they promptly lost all the midwestern farm states to the Democrats.

AT LEAST cut the ethanol scam, starting ASAP. I think even the greenies now understand that that was a stupid idea.


9 posted on 11/10/2010 9:54:40 AM PST by Cicero
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To: randita

At first glimpse, I thought this was about State Farm Insurance. Boy was I glad I read on.


10 posted on 11/10/2010 9:57:08 AM PST by bamagirl1944 (That's short for Alabama, not Obama)
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To: billorites

I’m not from NH, but I’ve found a new tagline-see below.

I love baseball and I love baseball metaphors. This one is perfect.


11 posted on 11/10/2010 9:57:09 AM PST by randita (“We didn’t just beat them. We cleaned out their entire bench"...Ryan Williams, NH Republican Party)
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To: kingattax

Lepanto Destruction PING!!


12 posted on 11/10/2010 9:59:23 AM PST by DarthVader (Nov 2 2010: That which supports Barack Hussein Obama must be sterilized and there are NO exceptions!)
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To: randita
400-member state House of Representatives

400 for NH? The whole US only has 435.

13 posted on 11/10/2010 10:01:25 AM PST by xp38
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To: randita
Nowhere is the shift more apparent than in New Hampshire, where the GOP won all three federal races and picked up a record 124 seats in the 400-member state House of Representatives.

New Hampshire needs 400 state House reps ????? are you kidding me ????

14 posted on 11/10/2010 10:09:05 AM PST by kingattax (99 % of liberals give the rest a bad name)
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To: DarthVader

Remember Lepanto !!!


15 posted on 11/10/2010 10:10:05 AM PST by kingattax (99 % of liberals give the rest a bad name)
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To: kingattax

That’s what I said. The state is no bigger than a borough of Alaska.


16 posted on 11/10/2010 10:16:58 AM PST by Extremely Extreme Extremist (The Republic of the United States of America)
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To: bamagirl1944
At first glimpse, I thought this was about State Farm Insurance. Boy was I glad I read on.

That's what I thought. That somehow removing democrats from offices took the insurance industry down the path of doom. LOL

17 posted on 11/10/2010 10:17:18 AM PST by madison10
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To: xp38
Yeah, New Hampshire has 425 state representatives and only 24 in the state senate.

You can't go to the market without running into a couple of your state reps. That's not such a bad thing.

Oh yeah. We pay them $100 a year plus mileage.

18 posted on 11/10/2010 10:28:12 AM PST by billorites (freepo ergo sum)
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To: billorites

ok...$100 a year makes that much more reasonable. Makes being a legislator more like a part time thing.


19 posted on 11/10/2010 10:37:40 AM PST by xp38
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To: randita
I read the headliner and thought that the Insurance Company "State Farm was hit hard by Democrats losing. Whats with the title?
20 posted on 11/10/2010 10:50:58 AM PST by Amos McCoy (I am, The Real McCoy!)
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To: bamagirl1944

Anything but Progressive. They’re staunch Donkey backers.


21 posted on 11/10/2010 10:53:42 AM PST by rfp1234
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To: Cicero
If ethanol is a good thing economically it wouldn't need subsidies.

End the ethanol farce NOW.

The farm subsides just enrich the corporate farmers and the greedy farmers.

The real reason America lost millions of small farmers is the very government programs that purport to save the farmers.Vastly increased government rules and restrictions made it uneconomical for small farms to survive,much less thrive.

And many farmers contributed by falling victim to "new paint disease";this is when a farmer buys un-needed new machinery (i.e. ,replaces perfectly useful machinery) because his neighbor got a new tractor,etc.It is just another example of consumerism.Now buying a new item because it actually improves your life by reducing labor or increasing productivity or providing greater enjoyment is fine;but Americans enslave themselves buying too much stuff just because everyone else is.

22 posted on 11/10/2010 10:59:39 AM PST by hoosierham (Waddaya mean Freedom isn't free ?;will you take a credit card?)
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To: hoosierham

Yes, they should eliminate the ethanol subsidy, and they should also eliminate the requirement to put it in gasoline.

But since a lot of people have been sucked into this stupid program, I still think it should be phased out over a period of a few years, so they can get back to using the land for something more sensible.


23 posted on 11/10/2010 11:06:01 AM PST by Cicero
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To: randita

Graeme Zielinski, communications director for the Wisconsin Democratic Party. “They will have to own their record at some point soon. A week in power, they have been talking about gays, guns, banning fake weed. They haven’t been talking about creating jobs. They’ve been talking about their weirdo, right agenda.”

******

Ex-reporter joins Dem Party as spokesman

Jan. 13, 2010 Madison — Former Journal Sentinel reporter Graeme Zielinski is the new spokesman for the state Democratic Party.

“I was raised in a proud Democratic family and I am similarly proud to hold this position,” Zielinski said in a statement.

Zielinski is a Milwaukee native who formerly worked at the Journal Sentinel, the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the San Antonio Express-News, the Capital Times and the Onion.


24 posted on 11/10/2010 11:06:15 AM PST by kcvl
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To: randita; Impy; fieldmarshaldj; ExTexasRedhead; AuH2ORepublican; InterceptPoint; LdSentinal; ...

This is too good.


25 posted on 11/10/2010 11:13:58 AM PST by Clintonfatigued (Illegal aliens commit crimes that Americans won't commit.)
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To: rfp1234
At the Free Republic March for Justice on Oct. 31, 1998, one of the speakers told how State Farm insurance was bludgeoned by the Clinton people into making a substantial contribution to Bill Clinton.

I wasn't there for the march but watched it on C-SPAN.

26 posted on 11/10/2010 11:54:04 AM PST by Verginius Rufus
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To: Clintonfatigued

This is an area where the Dems have yet to counter. The Tea Party movement has bubbled up from neighborhoods and small towns. Those folks are running for all kinds of local offices - from school board, to city council to mayor. The cream of the crop will rise and run for statewide office and from there, federal.

I don’t see similar interest by the moveon.org or dailykos folks. They just stand on the sidelines and throw stones. The pink shirts show up and act stupid from time to time, but they don’t seem to want to take on civic responsibility. They’re just media hogs.

The best Dems have are the SEIU purple shirts but they just come out when given free stuff and they’re not running for anything. They’re just rabble rousing.

A major factor in the Tea Party movement is the near 2 to 1 advantage conservatives enjoy in their use of social networking. I see that growing by leaps and bounds.

Obama built up this massive email contact list, but there’s no evidence many of those people are networking among themselves. They’re just taking directives from on high. That’s not a movement, it’s a dictatorship.


27 posted on 11/10/2010 12:15:47 PM PST by randita (“We didn’t just beat them. We cleaned out their entire bench"...Ryan Williams, NH Republican Party)
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To: xp38; kingattax

NH has always had a huge state house. The average size of its state house districts is under 3,500 residents. Talk about local representation!


28 posted on 11/10/2010 12:45:06 PM PST by AuH2ORepublican (If a politician won't protect innocent babies, what makes you think that he'll protect your rights?)
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To: kcvl

“Ex-reporter joins Dem Party as spokesman

...

Zielinski is a Milwaukee native who formerly worked at the Journal Sentinel, the Washington Post, the Chicago Tribune, the San Antonio Express-News, the Capital Times and the Onion.”


Wait, the Wisconsin Democratic Party’s new spokesman used to work as a journalist *for The Onion*? His new job fits him like a glove, since he must be used to creating fake news stories.


29 posted on 11/10/2010 12:50:03 PM PST by AuH2ORepublican (If a politician won't protect innocent babies, what makes you think that he'll protect your rights?)
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To: randita

Allstate to benefit?


30 posted on 11/10/2010 12:56:48 PM PST by TruthWillWin (The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other peoples money.)
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To: randita
New Hampshire. A lot of liberals, fleeing Mass taxes, thought they could bring their brand of progressivist misery to the Granite State.

Heh...

31 posted on 11/10/2010 1:15:13 PM PST by Mamzelle (donate to O'Donnell--even a dollar is plenty! She has paypal!)
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To: billorites

I disagree, the NH voters and Tea party should take credit, not that wind bag. His golden boy Stephens got pounded, in spite of Sununu’s very obvious “love” for stephens and disdain for Kimball.


32 posted on 11/10/2010 1:27:13 PM PST by Article10 (Roger That)
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To: randita
"Let them do their victory lap, but it’ll be one lap exactly. ... We have a pretty deep bench here,” said Graeme Zielinski, communications director for the Wisconsin Democratic Party. “They will have to own their record at some point soon. A week in power, they have been talking about gays, guns, banning fake weed. They haven’t been talking about creating jobs. They’ve been talking about their weirdo, right agenda."

Wow, so banning K2 -- responsible for a death in a nearby state no less -- is a 'weirdo, right agenda'. No, it's a public health issue. And that kind of attitude is exactly why so many of your friends are now out of a job.

So Gramz -- what do you think your boss Mike Tate thinks about your cavalier attitude towards dangerous drugs?

You keep on keepin' on, Gramz, and when you're in the unsmiling line in your 90th week of unemployment, maybe you can shine my shoes.

33 posted on 11/10/2010 3:28:12 PM PST by StAnDeliver (/)
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To: StAnDeliver
"You keep on keepin' on, Gramz, and when you're in the unsmiling line in your 90th week of unemployment, maybe you can shine my shoes."

Don't know much about Wisconsin politics, but this is as good a zinger as I've read on these boards.

34 posted on 11/10/2010 6:26:17 PM PST by Senator Goldwater
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To: Cicero
2. Cut the farm subsidies.

With commodities at record highs, this is something that can be politically feasible now. However, it should also go along with any reforms necessary to help make exporting crops easier. Food is one thing we can easily make and export and help to balance out trade.

35 posted on 11/10/2010 6:37:37 PM PST by Vince Ferrer
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To: randita
This is an area where the Dems have yet to counter.

The first Democrat loss after Obama was the crippling blow to ACORN. Then the Tea parties rose up and became the legal conservative counter to ACORN. Conservatives went into the election with a ground game, and Democrats had none.

36 posted on 11/10/2010 6:50:41 PM PST by Vince Ferrer
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To: madison10; bamagirl1944
Yeah, me too!

State Farm jingle re-mix

37 posted on 11/10/2010 7:54:12 PM PST by AnAmericanMother (Ministrix of ye Chasse, TTGC Ladies' Auxiliary (recess appointment))
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To: randita
Nowhere is the shift more apparent than in New Hampshire, where the GOP won all three federal races and picked up a record 124 seats in the 400-member state House of Representatives.

There are 400 seats in the NH House of Reps? Really?

38 posted on 11/10/2010 8:01:50 PM PST by TontoKowalski
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To: rrrod

Progressives have been trying to push their agenda since the 20s, each generation gets burned and then pushes back, but each time the camels nose is a little further under the tent.


39 posted on 11/10/2010 8:11:25 PM PST by Arizona Carolyn
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To: rrrod

Great idea! NOW is the time to do it! Also a great way to educate people before the next elections.


40 posted on 11/12/2010 7:29:11 AM PST by Ladysmith ("A community organizer can't bitch when communities organize." Rush Limbaugh)
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To: randita
Good article but the title is another incredibly annoying example of the pathetic levels to which so-called professional journalism has descended... /g

Democratic Losses Hit State Farm Teams Hard

Losses Hit Farm State Democrat Teams Hard

Fixed it. Was that too hard for them?

41 posted on 11/12/2010 8:18:44 AM PST by tarheelswamprat
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To: tarheelswamprat
Democratic Losses Hit State Farm Teams Hard

Losses Hit Farm State Democrat Teams Hard

Sheesh! Must remember to not talk on phone while posting... should be:

"Losses Hit State Democrat Farm Teams Hard"

Sorry, now it's right... /g

42 posted on 11/12/2010 8:26:31 AM PST by tarheelswamprat
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To: Amos McCoy

Same here. I thought the article was going to be about the loss of influence on State Farm Insurance lobbyists.


43 posted on 11/12/2010 8:35:10 AM PST by Rebelbase (Palin/Christie 2012)
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